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A road to education system reform

Updated: 2012-11-05 08:13
By Sally Thomas ( China Daily)

In the past decade, China has spent a lot on education. For instance, it has extended the free primary-school and middle-school education scheme from rural areas to urban areas. Also, Chinese students tend to perform very well at international competitions. However, some experts say China's exam-oriented education system curbs students' creativity while others praise it for its efficiency. Within the country, China's education system is often criticized for its unequal distribution of education resources, exam-oriented system and not-so-good teachers' salaries. The question is: How can Chinese authorities improve the education system?

At the 2009 annual session of the National People's Congress, Premier Wen Jiabao reiterated his commitment to educational development and the five principles outlined in the Guidelines of China's National Educational Development Plan (2010-2020): prioritizing development, nurturing people as the starting point, carrying out reform and innovation, promoting equity and improving quality.

Reforms of examination and enrolment systems, along with strengthening of the teaching force, were also specified. One area of international research that could help achieve these goals is educational effectiveness and improvement. The research recognizes different levels in an education system - student, classroom, department, region or local authority, national as well the school levels - and how a variety of factors at these levels can influence students' achievements and progress.

A road to education system reform